The Best Fishing Kayaks to Get You on the Fish

Derrek Sigler 02.09.21

Anglers are always trying to catch the best fish they can. One method that is on the rise is kayak fishing. Fishing kayaks are stable, quiet and very manoeuvrable. You can easily reel in and reach previously inaccessible fishing waters. Today, there is a wide range of fishing kayaks, for every budget. We use them ourselves, and here are some suggestions on the best kayaks for fishing.


1. Vibe Yellowfin 120 Kayak – Editor’s Choice

Incredible stability

The Vibe Yellowfin 120 is perhaps the best fishing kayak on the market. It has one of the most stable platforms on the market and combines speed with a smooth ride. This combination gives you a kayak that is easy to paddle and gets you to your destination very quickly. The Yellowfin has a load capacity of 400 pounds and is perhaps the most comfortable seat in a fishing kayak. Vibe could have stopped there, but also added some highly customizable storage options, including slots for the Plano 3600 clipboard. The rudder and sensor are ready to use and even include a matching paddle. If you want to be able to do a lot of service fishing, this is the kayak for you.

More/stable fishing kayak. A well thought out design.

Consumers and your friends will want to borrow it again and again.

In short, one of the best out there. Period.

2. Old Town Sportsman 136Autopilot

Set a course and fish.

Old Town has a long history of making kayaks and fishing kayaks. They connected their high-end fishing kayak to a Minn Kota electric motor to offer the AutoPilot 136 to anglers looking for a stable kayak that doesn’t require a paddle. You use the iPilot handheld remote and program where you want the kayak to go. It has a Minn Kota spot lock, autopilot and i-Pilot remote that works well with the Humminbird fish finder/GPS so you can program your kayak to hit the hot spots. It has a comfortable, height-adjustable seating system with ample lumbar support. Four 18 rails to mount devices like this Humminbird. There are two front-facing rod holders and two rear-facing recessed rod holders. Non-slip EVA foam pads prevent you from accidentally slipping when standing. There are storage areas under the seat, including special bait boxes where you can store your bait. It’s as sophisticated as a kayak can get.

Freedom of movement so you can concentrate on fishing.

It’s true, it’s expensive and it’s a mix between a kayak and a boat.

The bottom line is that you care about the fishing, not the paddling.

3. Perception Pescador Pro 12

Stable and easy to handle kayak.

One of our editors has been using this fishing kayak for a few seasons now and loves it. The Pescador Pro is a 12 foot Perception kayak with a very comfortable reclining seat that can be adjusted in height and angle. It is extremely stable on the water and has plenty of storage space for your fishing gear, coolers and more. The accessories allow you to add rod holders and fish finders. The Pescador Pro 12 has a maximum load capacity of 375 pounds. It runs straight through the water and works well in high breakers. The weight is 57 pounds, so it can be moved around if needed. The carrying straps are also handy.

Advantages / Very stable with a high carrying capacity.

The integrated aft keel can propel you in strong winds.

Very stable bottom line/fishing platform.

4. Dolphin Sun Trip 10 – Budget Choice

A cheap way to start kayak fishing.

It’s a tough pill to swallow to spend a lot of money on a fishing kayak. For the angler looking for the best fishing kayak on a budget, the Sun Dolphin Journey is a great buy. It’s a one-foot kayak with a seat on top, with a maximum capacity of 395 pounds. This is an excellent, simple kayak with plenty of storage space and three rod holders, two recessed and one swivel. It is UV-protected for long life. For $300, this is a good buy for any angler.

Advantages / Its low price and good features make it an excellent entry-level kayak.

Contraindications/not as stable as some other options

Bottom Line / A more affordable 10 foot fishing kayak option

5. Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 fishing kayak – Set of 2

As good as you and me!

It’s fun to go fishing with a buddy, but kayak fishing is what you do solo, unless you have a buddy who has one, or buys two. It can get expensive if you don’t get the pair of Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 fishing kayaks. For what you expect to pay for one kayak, you get two – with free shipping! These sturdy kayaks have storage space and a soft, adjustable fit. They are available with a mobile walking stick holder and extra load capacity. These fishing kayaks also include paddles, which makes this offer even better. This is a great way to take your child, wife or friend fishing.

Plus/mercy is a good deal on a kayak – great deal for a couple!

Disadvantages/Moderate load capacity.

Bottom Line/Best option for the angler who wants to buy more than one kayak.

6. ONYX Kayak Fishing Life Jacket – a MUST HAVE!

No fish is worth your life!

If you go kayaking, you will need a life jacket. Seriously, though. You’re a LIFE Giver. No fish is worth the risk. For kayak fishing, we really like the kayak fishing life jacket. It has pockets and hinged platforms for easy changing of bait, bandages and more. It is also very practical because it is designed for fishing from a kayak.

Benefits / Made specifically for kayak fishing with some pockets to make it easier.

The advantages and disadvantages of wearing a life jacket.

Bottom Line/Best kayak fishing lifejacket !

Benefits of kayak fishing

Kayak fishing has become so popular that there are now leagues of anglers competing for big cash prizes for the best catch. A kayak allows you to enjoy the benefits of fishing from a boat, without the costs associated with most fishing boats. In other words: Buying a fishing kayak is cheaper than buying most used boats, let alone new ones.

Kayaks also have an incredibly shallow draft, allowing them to access areas on lakes and ditches that are too shallow for most boats. They also disturb the water less, so the fish are less startled and the chance of a good bait is increased.

Kayak Rules

Currently, only seven US states require registration or additional fees for kayaks used on public waters. This also applies to fish kayaks. Some states want to add these fees, so it’s important to check local regulations before using your new kayak for the first time.

If you are using a trolling motor, such as. B. the aforementioned Poo in Old Town, you will also need to review these rules as you may now be classified as a motorboat. California is requiring registration and fees, and other states are following suit.

Do I need to register my kayak?

It depends on where you live or where you want to use your kayak. Check local regulations before you leave.

Can I stand upright in a kayak?

Some kayaks are stable enough and designed so that you can stand while using them. Check the design of the kayaks and try them out in shallow water first. Always wear your PFD!

Should I wear a life jacket on a fishing kayak?

Check local regulations first. Of course we recommend that you ALWAYS wear a life jacket on the water. No fish is worth your life.

About the author

Derrek Siegler.

Derrek Sigler has been a professional outdoor writer for over twenty years, since earning his M.F.A. in Creative Writing with a thesis on fishing humor. But if you ask anyone who knows him, he’s been telling fishing stories since he was old enough to hold a fishing pole. He has written for Cabela’s and worked as an editor for Gun Digest. Over the years he has also written for Petersen Hunt, North American Whitetail Magazine, Wildbird, Grandview Media and worked with Bass Pro, Tough Brands and Bone Collector Stores. His success in farming led him to write for their magazine, and he appeared several times on their television show to talk about hunting and ATVs. He writes about the things he loves – hunting, fishing, camping, trucks, ATVs, boating, snowmobiling, and the outdoor lifestyle he enjoys with his family in their home state of Michigan, and much more during their adventures across North America.

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